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Household internet access ranged from 23% in Greece to 80% in the Netherlands
In the first quarter of 2006, the highest proportions of households with internet access were recorded in the Netherlands (80%), Denmark (79%), Sweden (77%) and Luxembourg (70%). The lowest levels were registered in Greece (23%), Slovakia (27%), Hungary (32%), Lithuania and Portugal (both 35%).
At the beginning of 2006, the highest proportions of enterprises with internet access were recorded in Finland (99%), Denmark and Austria (both 98%) and the Netherlands (97%). Only in Latvia (80%), Cyprus (86%), Lithuania (88%) and Poland (89%) were fewer than 90% of enterprises connected to the internet.
Broadband offers a much faster connection to the internet, and offers the potential of changing the way the internet is used. The proportion of households with a broadband connection in 2006 was highest in the Netherlands (66%), Denmark (63%), Finland (53%) and Sweden (51%), and lowest in Greece (4%), Slovakia (11%), Cyprus (12%) and Ireland (13%). Amongst enterprises the highest levels of broadband connections were recorded in Sweden and Finland (both 89%), Spain (87%) and France (86%), and the lowest in Poland (46%), Cyprus (55%), Lithuania (57%) and Latvia (59%).
Nearly three quarters of young people used the internet at least once a week
In the first quarter of 2006, the highest proportions of individuals regularly using the internet were recorded in Sweden (80%), Denmark (78%), the Netherlands (76%) and Finland (71%), and the lowest in Greece (23%), Cyprus (29%), Italy and Portugal (both 31%).
At EU25 level a higher proportion of men than women used the internet regularly (51% of men compared with 43% of women), and this was true for all Member States, although in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Finland the gap was only one or two percentage points. In Luxembourg the gap was 21 percentage points (men 76%, women 55%).
While nearly three quarters of individuals in the EU25 aged 16 to 24 (73%), and more than half of those aged 25 to 54 (54%), used the internet regularly, only a fifth of those aged 55 to 74 (20%) did so. While the gap in regular use between Member States ranged from one to two for 16-24 year olds (47% in Greece to 96% in the Netherlands) and one to three for 25-54 year olds (27% in Greece to 89% in Sweden), it reached one to fourteen for 55-74 year olds (4% in Greece to 56% in Denmark and Sweden).